Horseback Riding Lessons

For the past couple of years, my daughters have been riding in horse shows with a local saddle club.  We’ve been lucky in that my wife’s cousin has let us borrow her horse for the shows, so costs have been minimal.Bought a Pony

Unfortunately, that horse isn’t available this year.  We knew that a few months ago, so the plan was to take a year off from the shows and focus on lessons, to get the girls some real skills.  We found a great instructor at a stable about 30 miles from our house.  Since we live less than two miles from the border of the biggest city in the state, that’s a comparatively short drive.

We pay her $200 per month for 1 lesson per week for both girls.   They each get 30-45 minutes on the horse during each lesson.

Now that show season has started, the plan seems to have changed.   The girls will be riding a different borrowed pony tomorrow.  The shows cost about $50 for registration, lunch, and gas.  Our club has 1 show per month, but my wife has assured me they’ll only be hitting three shows this season and limiting the number of events to keep the cost down.

The direct costs aren’t too bad, but there’s a problem with keeping-up-with-the-Joneses accessorizing.  Vests and boots and helmets and belts and shirts, oh my.

I’d guess our costs for the summer will be $300 per month.

One thing we’ve been considering is buying a pony.  We can get an older pony for around $500-1000.  Older is good because they are calmer and slower.  Boarding the thing will cost another $200 per month.   We’ve been slowly accumulating the stuff to own a horse, so I’m guessing the “OMG, he let me buy a horse, now I need X” shopping bill will come to around $1500, but I’ll figure $2000 to be safe.   We already have a trailer, a saddle, blankets, buddy-straps, combs, brushes, buckets, rakes, shovels, and I-bought-this-but-I-will-just-put-it-in-the-pile-of-horse-stuff-so-Jason-will-never-notice stuff.  We’re certainly close to being ready to buy.

(FYI: If you’re starting from scratch, don’t think you’re going to get into horse ownership for less than $10,000 the first year, and that’s being a very efficient price-shopper.)

So we’re looking at $5400 for a horse, gear, and boarding the first year.  If we cancel the lessons, by spring we’d have $2000 of that saved and most of the rest can be bought over time.

On the other hand, if we go that route, we’ll never save enough to buy the hobby farm we’re looking for.

Decisions, decisions.  I should just buy a new motorcycle.   Within a year, I win financially.

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  • 1 comment


    1. That must be really exciting news for the girls once oyu decide to get a pony. But yeah, that could really be expensive. Good luck with your decision.

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